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Rep. Pascrell's official statement calling for an impeachment inquiry of Donald Trump can be viewed here.

Rep. Pascrell's extended view on impeachment:

Under the Constitution, impeachment must follow a careful process. Articles of impeachment alleging specific misconduct must be introduced, debated in committee, and approved by a majority in committee. Where articles are individually approved by a majority of the U.S. House of Representatives, impeachment occurs, and the U.S. Senate is compelled to hold a trial of the President under those articles approved by the House. If an article of impeachment is sustained by two-thirds of Senate membership, the President will be removed from office; any number short of that and removal fails. Only twice in our history has the U.S. House ratified articles of impeachment, and in both cases the Senate did not vote to remove the executive.

Article II, Section 4 provides that the President “shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.” The constitutional wording is broad, as the Founding Fathers largely left it up to the Congress to determine whether a President’s behavior violates the integrity of the office he or she holds and should be subject to impeachment and removal from office.

I believe we have reached that threshold under the current executive and that Congress should commence an impeachment inquiry of Donald Trump. As president, Donald Trump has disgraced his office and our nation beyond measure. He has corrupted our institutions for profit. He has used his tenure to divide our people and increase fear and hatred of our neighbors. He and his adjutants have evaded and obstructed legitimate attempts of oversight of their debasement, including over the current executive’s tax filings and financial entanglements. His crimes and obstruction of justice have not abated but accelerated because of failure to constrain him. It is only Congress that can finally hold him to account. 

It should go without mention, but electoral considerations must mean nothing in this context. Our Founders did not anticipate an entire political party collectively putting its interests in power above the health and protection of American democracy. That is the burden of our time. But their dereliction, and possible Senate neglect, do not relieve the House of its responsibility.

Thomas Jefferson reminded us that those who stand for nothing will fall for anything. I stand for democracy in the United States.

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